Misunderstanding the Internet.

By: Curran, James.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookSeries: Communication and society.Publisher: New York : Routledge, 2012Description: 194 p. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 9780415579582.Subject(s): Social Change, Control and Conflict | Social networking | Internet-Political aspects | Internet-Economic aspects | Internet-Social aspectsDDC classification: 303.483CUR
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

<p>The growth of the internet has been spectacular. There are now more 1.5 billion internet users across the globe, about one quarter of the world's population. This is certainly a new phenomenon that is of enormous significance for the economic, political and social life of contemporary societies.</p> <p>However, much popular and academic writing about the internet takes a technologically deterministic view, assuming that the internet's potential will be realised in essentially transformative ways. This was especially true in the euphoric moment of the mid-1990s, when many commentators wrote about the internet with awe and wonderment. While this moment may be over, its underlying technocentrism - the belief that technology determines outcomes - lingers on, and with it, a failure to understand the internet in its social, economic and political context.</p> <p>Misunderstanding the Internetis a short introduction, encompassing the history, sociology, politics and economics of the internet and its impact on society. The book has a simple three part structure:</p> Part 1 looks at the history of the internet, and offers an overview of the internet's place in society Part 2 focuses on the control and economics of the internet Part 3 examines the internet's political and cultural influence <p>Misunderstanding the Internetis a polemical, sociologically and historically informed textbook that aims to challenge both popular myths and existing academic orthodoxies around the internet.</p>

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Part I Overview (p. 1)
  • 1 Reinterpreting the internet (p. 3)
  • 2 Rethinking internet history (p. 34)
  • Part II Political economy of the internet (p. 67)
  • 3 Web 2.0 and the death of the blockbuster economy (p. 69)
  • 4 Outsourcing internet regulation (p. 95)
  • Part III Internet and power (p. 121)
  • 5 The internet and social networking (p. 123)
  • 6 The internet and radical politics (p. 149)
  • Part IV Looking forward (p. 177)
  • 7 Conclusion (p. 179)
  • Index (p. 186)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Curran, Fenton, and Freedman (all, communication, Goldsmiths, Univ. of London) present a timely, three-part evaluation of the hype and hope surrounding the Internet. The book appears in the "Communication and Society" series, which Fenton edits. The authors acknowledge the Internet's significant social impact, decry its overstated promises, and study the forces that control the medium. Curran, who directs Goldsmiths Leverhulme Media Research Centre, examines the Internet's history and place in society. Freedman, a researcher at the Media Research Centre and coeditor of the journal Global Media and Communication, discusses the economics and regulation of the Internet. Fenton, codirector of the Media Research Centre and of Goldsmiths Centre for the Study of Global Media and Democracy, considers the Internet's cultural and political influence. The authors conclude by arguing for "an Internet that is run for the benefit of the public without discrimination by market or state." Each of the six essays in the book is accompanied by a significant list of print and electronic references, and the extensive index covers the entire volume. The work will be useful to those interested in the Internet's social impacts and implications. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students, faculty, researchers, and policy makers. G. A. Mayer SUNY College at Oneonta